Special Collections

Universal Love of Reading

Description: A collection of science fiction, fantasy, and space themed books that will keep you in another universe all summer long. #adults #summer


Showing 1 through 25 of 35 results

The Physics of Star Trek

by Lawrence M. Krauss

Lawrence M. Krauss boldly goes where Star Trek has gone--and beyond.

From Newton to Hawking, from Einstein to Feynman, from Kirk to Picard, Krauss leads readers on a voyage to the world of physics as we now know it and as it might one day be.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Magnificent Desolation

by Buzz Aldrin and Ken Abraham

On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin became the second human to walk on the moon.

Here, he offers a first-person account of the lunar landing that came within seconds of failure, and gives an insider's perspective on how being part of NASA's nonstop public relations 'world tour' led him into a downward spiral of depression and alcoholism.

The book continues on an optimistic note through Aldrin's recovery, his second marriage, and his work opening the doors of space tourism for all. Color historical and personal photos are included.

Co-author Ken Abraham is a New York Times bestselling author.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


A Brief History of Time

by Stephen Hawking

A landmark volume in science writing by one of the great minds of our time, Stephen Hawking's book explores such profound questions as: How did the universe begin--and what made its start possible? Does time always flow forward? Is the universe unending--or are there boundaries? Are there other dimensions in space? What will happen when it all ends?

Told in language we all can understand, A Brief History of Time plunges into the exotic realms of black holes and quarks, of antimatter and "arrows of time," of the big bang and a bigger God--where the possibilities are wondrous and unexpected. With exciting images and profound imagination, Stephen Hawking brings us closer to the ultimate secrets at the very heart of creation of time and space.

A New York Times Bestseller

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Ender's Game

by Orson Scott Card

In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race's next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew "Ender" Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn't make the cut — young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training.

Ender's skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister.

Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender's two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If, that is, the world survives.

Hugo and Nebula Awards Winner.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Cosmos

by Carl Sagan

This visually stunning book with over 250 full-color illustrations, many of them never before published, is based on Carl Sagan's thirteen-part television series.

Told with Sagan's remarkable ability to make scientific ideas both comprehensible and exciting, Cosmos is about science in its broadest human context, how science and civilization grew up together.

The book also explores spacecraft missions of discovery of the nearby planets, the research in the Library of ancient Alexandria, the human brain, Egyptian hieroglyphics, the origin of life, the death of the Sun, the evolution of galaxies and the origins of matter, suns and worlds.

Sagan retraces the fifteen billion years of cos-mic evolution that have transformed matter into life and consciousness, enabling the Cosmos to wonder about itself. He considers the latest findings on life elsewhere and how we might communicate with the beings of other worlds.

Cosmos is the story of our long journey of discovery and the forces and individuals who helped to shape modern science, including Democritus, Hypatia, Kepler, Newton, Huygens, Champollion, Lowell and Humason.

Sagan looks at our planet from an extra-terrestrial vantage point and sees a blue jewel-like world, inhabited by a lifeform that is just beginning to discover its own unity and to ven-ture into the vast ocean of space.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

by Douglas Adams

Seconds before the Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out-of-work actor.

Together this dynamic pair begin a journey through space aided by quotes from The Hitchhiker's Guide ("A towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have") and a galaxy-full of fellow travelers: Zaphod Beeblebrox--the two-headed, three-armed ex-hippie and totally out-to-lunch president of the galaxy; Trillian, Zaphod's girlfriend (formally Tricia McMillan), whom Arthur tried to pick up at a cocktail party once upon a time zone; Marvin, a paranoid, brilliant, and chronically depressed robot; Veet Voojagig, a former graduate student who is obsessed with the disappearance of all the ballpoint pens he bought over the years.

Where are these pens? Why are we born? Why do we die? Why do we spend so much time between wearing digital watches? For all the answers stick your thumb to the stars. And don't forget to bring a towel!

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The Martian

by Andy Weir

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet.

Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next.

Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Seveneves

by Neal Stephenson

What would happen if the world were ending?

A catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb. In a feverish race against the inevitable, nations around the globe band together to devise an ambitious plan to ensure the survival of humanity far beyond our atmosphere, in outer space.

But the complexities and unpredictability of human nature coupled with unforeseen challenges and dangers threaten the intrepid pioneers, until only a handful of survivors remains . . .

Five thousand years later, their progeny--seven distinct races now three billion strong--embark on yet another audacious journey into the unknown . . . to an alien world utterly transformed by cataclysm and time: Earth.

A writer of dazzling genius and imaginative vision, Neal Stephenson combines science, philosophy, technology, psychology, and literature in a magnificent work of speculative fiction that offers a portrait of a future that is both extraordinary and eerily recognizable.

As he did in Anathem, Cryptonomicon, the Baroque Cycle, and Reamde, Stephenson explores some of our biggest ideas and perplexing challenges in a breathtaking saga that is daring, engrossing, and altogether brilliant.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet

by Becky Chambers

A rollicking space adventure with a lot of heartWhen Rosemary Harper joins the crew of the Wayfarer, she isn't expecting much.

The patched-up ship has seen better days, but it offers her everything she could possibly want: a spot to call home, a chance to explore the far-off corners of the galaxy, and some distance from her past.

And nothing could be further from what she's known than the crew of the Wayfarer.

From Sissix, the exotic reptilian pilot, to Kizzy and Jenks, the chatty engineers who keep the ship running, to the noble captain Ashby, life aboard is chaotic and crazy--exactly what Rosemary wants.

That is until the crew is offered the job of a lifetime tunneling wormholes through space to a distant planet. Sure, they'll earn enough money to live comfortably for years, but risking her life wasn't part of the job description.

The journey through the galaxy is full of excitement, adventure, and mishaps for the Wayfarer team. And along the way, Rosemary comes to realize that a crew is a family, and that family isn't necessarily the worst thing in the universe...as long as you actually like them.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Leviathan Wakes

by James S.A. Corey

This book is the basis for the first season of The Expanse, a Syfy Original series coming December 14th 2015!

Leviathan Wakes is James S. A. Corey's first novel in the epic series the Expanse, a modern masterwork of science fiction where humanity has colonized the solar system.

Two hundred years after migrating into space, mankind is in turmoil.

When a reluctant ship's captain and washed-up detective find themselves involved in the case of a missing girl, what they discover brings our solar system to the brink of civil war, and exposes the greatest conspiracy in human history.

Drive against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe.

A new player rises from the depths of history, fanning the flames that will sweep the entire region onto The Dragon's Path-the path to war.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Dune

by Frank Herbert

Here is the novel that will be forever considered a triumph of the imagination.

Set on the desert planet Arrakis, Dune is the story of the boy Paul Atreides, who would become the mysterious man known as Maud'dib. He would avenge the traitorous plot against his noble family--and would bring to fruition humankind's most ancient and unattainable dream.

A stunning blend of adventure and mysticism, environmentalism and politics, Dune won the first Nebula Award, shared the Hugo Award, and formed the basis of what is undoubtedly the grandest epic in science fiction.

Frank Herbert's death in 1986 was a tragic loss, yet the astounding legacy of his visionary fiction will live forever.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Riding Rockets

by Mike Mullane

On February 1, 1978, the first group of space shuttle astronauts, twenty-nine men and six women, were introduced to the world.

Among them would be history makers, including the first American woman and the first African American in space. This assembly of astronauts would carry NASA through the most tumultuous years of the space shuttle program. Four would die on Challenger.

USAF Colonel Mike Mullane was a member of this astronaut class, and Riding Rockets is his story -- told with a candor never before seen in an astronaut's memoir. Mullane strips the heroic veneer from the astronaut corps and paints them as they are -- human.

His tales of arrested development among military flyboys working with feminist pioneers and post-doc scientists are sometimes bawdy, often hilarious, and always entertaining.

Mullane vividly portrays every aspect of the astronaut experience -- from telling a female technician which urine-collection condom size is a fit; to walking along a Florida beach in a last, tearful goodbye with a spouse; to a wild, intoxicating, terrifying ride into space; to hearing "Taps" played over a friend's grave. Mullane is brutally honest in his criticism of a NASA leadership whose bungling would precipitate the Challenger disaster.

Riding Rockets is a story of life in all its fateful uncertainty, of the impact of a family tragedy on a nine-year-old boy, of the revelatory effect of a machine called Sputnik, and of the life-steering powers of lust, love, and marriage. It is a story of the human experience that will resonate long after the call of "Wheel stop."

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Binti

by Nnedi Okorafor

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs.

Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has long warred with the Meduse, an alien race that has become the stuff of nightmares. Oomza University has wronged the Meduse, and Binti's stellar travel will bring her within their deadly reach.

If Binti hopes to survive the legacy of a war not of her making, she will need both the the gifts of her people and the wisdom enshrined within the University, itself -- but first she has to make it there, alive.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Rise of the Rocket Girls

by Nathalia Holt

The riveting true story of the women who launched America into space. In the 1940s and 50s, when the newly minted Jet Propulsion Laboratory needed quick-thinking mathematicians to calculate velocities and plot trajectories, they didn't turn to male graduates.

Rather, they recruited an elite group of young women who, with only pencil, paper, and mathematical prowess, transformed rocket design, helped bring about the first American satellites, and made the exploration of the solar system possible.

For the first time, Rise of the Rocket Girls tells the stories of these women--known as "human computers"--who broke the boundaries of both gender and science. Based on extensive research and interviews with all the living members of the team, Rise of the Rocket Girls offers a unique perspective on the role of women in science: both where we've been, and the far reaches of space to which we're heading.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Women in Space

by Karen Gibson

Twenty-three women from 10 different countries whose careers span a half century of human spaceflight are profiled in this educational book for young readers.

Women in Space features such figures as Sally Ride, the first American woman to orbit the earth; Peggy Whitson, who logged more than a year in orbit while aboard the International Space Station; Mae Jemison, the first African American woman in space; and astronauts from Japan, Canada, Italy, South Korea, and France.

Additional attention is paid to the women of Mercury 13, a program that trained women in the same screening tests administered to the men who became the first astronauts at NASA.

Space pioneer Valentina Tereshkova, who in 1963 became the first woman to rocket into space, is also profiled.

These stories of the pilots, physicists, and doctors who broke the stratospheric ceiling demonstrate the vital role women have played in the history of space exploration.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The Copernicus Complex

by Caleb Scharf

Nicolaus Copernicus dared to go against the establishment by proposing that Earth rotates around the Sun. Having demoted Earth from its unique position in the cosmos to one of mediocrity, Copernicus set in motion a revolution in scientific thought.

This perspective has influenced our thinking for centuries. However, recent evidence challenges the Copernican Principle, hinting that we do in fact live in a special place, at a special time, as the product of a chain of unlikely events. But can we be significant if the Sun is still just one of a billion trillion stars in the observable universe?

And what if our universe is just one of a multitude of others-a single slice of an infinity of parallel realities? In The Copernicus Complex, the renowned astrophysicist Caleb Scharf takes us on a scientific adventure, from tiny microbes within the Earth to distant exoplanets, probability theory, and beyond, arguing that there is a solution to this contradiction, a third way of viewing our place in the cosmos, if we weigh the evidence properly.

As Scharf explains, we do occupy an unusual time in a 14-billion-year-old universe, in a somewhat unusual type of solar system surrounded by an ocean of unimaginable planetary diversity: hot Jupiters with orbits of less than a day, planet-size rocks spinning around dead stars, and a wealth of alien super-Earths. Yet life here is built from the most common chemistry in the universe, and we are a snapshot taken from billions of years of biological evolution.

Bringing us to the cutting edge of scientific discovery, Scharf shows how the answers to fundamental questions of existence will come from embracing the peculiarity of our circumstance without denying the Copernican vision.

With characteristic verve, Scharf uses the latest scientific findings to reconsider where we stand in the balance between cosmic significance and mediocrity, order and chaos.

Presenting a compelling and bold view of our true status,The Copernicus Complex proposes a way forward in the ultimate quest: determining life's abundance, not just across this universe but across all realities.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The Science of Star Wars

by Mark Brake and Jon Chase

Discover the science behind the most popular sci-fi franchise of all time.Capturing the imagination and hearts of crowds worldwide, Star Wars is a fantastic feat of science fiction and fantasy.

We marvel at the variety of creatures and technology and the mystery behind the force. But how much of the Star Wars world is rooted in reality? Could we see some of the extraordinary inventions materialize in our world?

The Science of Star Wars addresses fifty topics that span the movies' universe such as battle technology, alien life, space travel, etc. You'll find fascinating explorations of physics, plausibility, and more. The book addresses many unanswered, burning questions including:

How long before we get a Star Wars speeder off the ground?

What exactly is the Force?

How could Kylo Ren stop a blaster shot in mid-air?How could we live on a gas giant like Bespin?Nature versus nurture: How does it play out in the making of Jedi?

How much would it cost to build the Death Star?

And much more!Written for every fan of the films, you don't need to be a Jedi or a scientist to appreciate all of Mark Brake and Jon Chase's fun and informative analysis of this classic series. Prepare your mind to make the jump to light speed and find out about the facts behind one of our favorite modern epics.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The War of the Worlds

by H. G. Wells

The chilling novel account of a Martian invasion of London in the nineteenth century -- a science fiction classic for all time.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Sleeping Giants

by Sylvain Neuvel

A page-turning debut in the tradition of Michael Crichton, World War Z, and The Martian, Sleeping Giants is a thriller fueled by an earthshaking mystery—and a fight to control a gargantuan power.

A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near her home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings.

But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.

Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved—its origins, architects, and purpose unknown. Its carbon dating defies belief; military reports are redacted; theories are floated, then rejected.

But some can never stop searching for answers.

Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top secret team to crack the hand’s code. And along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the provenance of the relic.

What’s clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unraveling history’s most perplexing discovery—and figuring out what it portends for humanity. But once the pieces of the puzzle are in place, will the result prove to be an instrument of lasting peace or a weapon of mass destruction?

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Reality Is Not What It Seems

by Carlo Rovelli and Erica Segre and Simon Carnell

From the New York Times–bestselling author of Seven Brief Lessons on Physics, a closer look at the mind-bending nature of the universe.What are the elementary ingredients of the world? Do time and space exist? And what exactly is reality?

Theoretical physicist Carlo Rovelli has spent his life exploring these questions. He tells us how our understanding of reality has changed over the centuries and how physicists think about the structure of the universe today.

In elegant and accessible prose, Rovelli takes us on a wondrous journey from Democritus to Albert Einstein, from Michael Faraday to gravitational waves, and from classical physics to his own work in quantum gravity.

As he shows us how the idea of reality has evolved over time, Rovelli offers deeper explanations of the theories he introduced so concisely in Seven Brief Lessons on Physics.

This book culminates in a lucid overview of quantum gravity, the field of research that explores the quantum nature of space and time, seeking to unify quantum mechanics and general relativity.

Rovelli invites us to imagine a marvelous world where space breaks up into tiny grains, time disappears at the smallest scales, and black holes are waiting to explode—a vast universe still largely undiscovered.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


The Man in the High Castle

by Philip K. Dick

It's America in 1962. Slavery is legal once again. The few Jews who still survive hide under assumed names.

In San Francisco, the I Ching is as common as the Yellow Pages. All because some twenty years earlier the United States lost a war--and is now occupied by Nazi Germany and Japan.

This harrowing, Hugo Award-winning novel is the work that established Philip K. Dick as an innovator in science fiction while breaking the barrier between science fiction and the serious novel of ideas.

In it Dick offers a haunting vision of history as a nightmare from which it may just be possible to wake.

Winner of the Hugo Award

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Astrophysics for People in a Hurry

by Neil Degrasse Tyson

The essential universe, from our most celebrated and beloved astrophysicist.

What is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There’s no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson. But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in tasty chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.

While you wait for your morning coffee to brew, for the bus, the train, or a plane to arrive, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry will reveal just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics, and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.

A New York Times Bestseller

Date Added: 04/02/2019


We Have No Idea

by Daniel Whiteson and Jorge Cham

Prepare to learn everything we still don’t know about our strange, mostly mysterious universe.

PHD Comics creator Jorge Cham and particle physicist Daniel Whiteson have teamed up to spelunk through the enormous gaps in our cosmological knowledge, armed with their popular infographics, cartoons, and unusually entertaining and lucid explanations of science.

In We Have No Idea, they explore the biggest unknowns in the universe, why these things are still mysteries, and what a lot of smart people are doing to figure out the answers (or at least ask the right questions).

While they're at it, they helpfully demystify many complicated things we do know about, from quarks and neutrinos to gravitational waves and exploding black holes.

With equal doses of humor and delight, they invite us to see the universe as a vast expanse of mostly uncharted territory that's still ours to explore.

This entertaining illustrated science primer is the perfect book for anyone who's curious about all the big questions physicists are still trying to answer.

Date Added: 04/02/2019


All Systems Red

by Martha Wells

A murderous android discovers itself in All Systems Red, a tense science fiction adventure by Martha Wells that interrogates the roots of consciousness through Artificial Intelligence.


In a corporate-dominated spacefaring future, planetary missions must be approved and supplied by the Company. Exploratory teams are accompanied by Company-supplied security androids, for their own safety. But in a society where contracts are awarded to the lowest bidder, safety isn’t a primary concern.

On a distant planet, a team of scientists are conducting surface tests, shadowed by their Company-supplied ‘droid — a self-aware SecUnit that has hacked its own governor module, and refers to itself (though never out loud) as “Murderbot.”

Scornful of humans, all it really wants is to be left alone long enough to figure out who it is. But when a neighboring mission goes dark, it's up to the scientists and their Murderbot to get to the truth.


Winner of the 2018 Alex Award (10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences)

Nominated for 2017 Nebula Awards- Best Novella

Date Added: 04/02/2019


Doctor Who

by Steve Tribe

THE book the Time Lords (including the Doctor) read when studying at the Academy, the full-color in-world history that pieces together the true story of Gallifrey from the many and contradictory accounts that survived the Last Great Time War.

Doctor Who: A Brief History of Time Lords tells the story of all of this ancient, legendary civilization, of notable historical figures, of Gallifrey itself, of the Time War and much more. The planet Gallifrey. The Shining World of the Seven Systems. Often to be found in the constellation of Kasterborous.

Birthplace of one of the oldest civilizations in the universe: The Time Lords. From their technologies and strategies to the renegades like the Master and the Doctor himself, this is the definitive guide to the oldest and most powerful civilization in the universe. They invented black holes, transmits, stellar manipulators, and they atrophied.

A bunch of elderly academics in funny hats, the Time Lords watched the whole history of creation. This was the civilization that inflicted some of its most renowned and deadly renegades and criminals on the universe: the Master, the Rani, the Monk, the War Chief, yet it was also the benevolent power that rid the cosmos of the Great Vampires, the Racnoss and the Fendahl.

Featuring full-color, never-before-seen illustrations and a beautiful interior design, this is a highly collectible in-world companion no Whovian can be without.

Date Added: 04/02/2019



Showing 1 through 25 of 35 results